Ferrari have confirmed that Charles Leclerc’s crash on the formation lap at Interlagos on Sunday was beyond his control.
Leclerc was sent spinning into the barriers at Ferradura as the drivers prepared for the start of the Sao Paulo Grand Prix, with the Ferrari driver lamenting his bad luck after initially believing a hydraulics failure cost him.
Then came the radio message from the Monégasque driver: “I lost the hydraulics. Why the f*ck am I so unlucky. Why the f*ck am I so unlucky!”
Ferrari confirm cause of Charles Leclerc formation lap crash at Interlagos
Leclerc later posted online that “it hurts” for him to have not taken part in the race at all, with team-mate Carlos Sainz climbing into the top six come the chequered flag after making several overtakes on Sunday.
Having been without a victory in Formula 1 since Austria last year, Leclerc was looking to take the fight to Max Verstappen at Interlagos after securing a start on the front row.
But after crashing out, Ferrari have now confirmed the reasons behind it.
Disappointed to say the least. Lost the power steering and the engine power on the formation lap. It hurts pic.twitter.com/J7kIESy3Do
— Charles Leclerc (@Charles_Leclerc) November 5, 2023
“A really tough break for @charles_leclerc,” Ferrari posted on X (formerly Twitter).
“During the formation lap, Charles experienced an issue with one of our car systems which led to a loss of hydraulics supply, meaning he had no power steering and no gearbox command.
“Unfortunately, this meant there wasn’t anything he could have done to control the car and avoid spinning into the wall.
“After a long three weeks, we’ll recharge and set our sights on a strong finish to the 2023 season.”
Leclerc himself was clearly disappointed with how his weekend turned out after a promising start, explaining to Sky Sports F1 after crashing out: “When I lost the steering wheel and I went straight basically because I had no hydraulic anymore.
“I don’t think it’s a hydraulic problem. I mean, I know what it is. I can’t go too much into detail.
“Then there was an engine thing that made me lock the rear wheels and obviously I spun and hit the wall. I couldn’t do anything.”
One saving grace for the Scuderia will be that Sainz’s P6 finish meant that Ferrari were able to reel in Mercedes by a handful of points in the Constructors’ standings, keeping the fight for second place in that championship rolling on into the final two races of the season.